I’ve had a couple of days to mull over my amazing experience at PWC. I’ve carried those ahas with me and unpacked them several times to look them over. Today I’ve had the opportunity to share with people about what I learned. This evening it felt like the perfect time to post some of those vital lessons.
Take aways from the Philadelphia Writers’ Conference:
- First lesson, bring business cards. I was asked many times for a card. We remember who we connected with by exchanging biz cards. I didn’t even have any real estate cards with me. Next conference I attend I will take a stack of business cards with me. Positive note…I brought business cards home from people I met, and I wrote out my number and email address for those who asked for the info.
- Query, proposal, book. As a non-fiction writer I learned, STOP WRITING THE BOOK. Instead, write a great query letter, a powerful proposal, and only after receiving a book contract, write the book.
- Move past my comfort zone. I had no intention of meeting with a literary agent because I didn’t feel ready to pitch a book idea. Thanks to my friend Lu Ann, I made that appointment and pitched an idea. No matter what the outcome, I decided this was going to be a great experience for me and to just go with it and have fun. It was a great experience and the outcome was amazing.
- Write consistently and often. Dreaming of writing, thinking about writing, intending to write…won’t get a book written. To become a writer, one must write.
- Blogs are important. I confess I was nervous about being a blogger, as I thought bloggers might be considered the obnoxious stepchildren of writers. I attended a social media class that blew that idea away and I jotted down so many great tips for improving my blog’s visibility. First change….Google search doesn’t like cutesy titles! Clarity is better than cleverness when it comes to blog titles.
- Help is okay. I brought home a great book called “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Getting Published”. Packed with helpful content, this easy to use book is my new best friend.
- Talk to everyone. I met poets and sci-fi writers, authors penning memoirs and other bloggers, essay writers and writers of children’s books, published authors and those who want to be. Everyone was encouraging, helpful, and sincere.
- Do the class assignments and be willing to share. I appreciated the immediate response and feedback to my sample proposal.
I have had much to think about since PWC. That open door that I walked through became a pivotal experience. I am grateful for the opportunity to be surrounded by the creative energy of so many writers. The instruction I received continues to shine a bright light on the path I am treading, guiding me along the unfamiliar terrain. What an amazing journey. Stay tuned.